Marxist Theory Featured

This article by Alan Woods was originally written in 1989 to commemorate 200 years of the Great French Revolution, with a new introduction by the author. Alan Woods explains the internal dynamics of the revolution and above all the role played by the masses.

In this in depth article Alan Woods looks at the specific historical role of Napoleon Bonaparte. He looks into the characteristics of this man that fitted the needs of the reactionary bourgeoisie as it attempted to consolidate its grip on French society and sweep to one side the most revolutionary elements who had played a key role in guaranteeing the victory of the revolution.

This article by Alan Woods looks at how the French Revolution affected British poets. It struck Britain like a thunderbolt affecting all layers of society and this was reflected in its artists and writers.

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart is considered by many as the greatest musician of all time. He was revolutionary in more senses than one. One of his main achievements was in the field of opera. Before Mozart, opera was seen as an art form exclusively for the upper classes. This was true not only of those who went to see it, but also of its dramatis personae - the characters who were shown on the stage, and especially the protagonists. With The Marriage of Figaro (Le Nozze di Figaro in its original Italian title), all this changes. This is the story of a servant who stands up to his boss and outwits his master.

Despite his confused politics, Lenin had a great respect for the Russian anarchist Kropotkin, particularly as the author of the book about the Great French Revolution. He pointed out that Kropotkin had been the first to look at the French Revolution through the eyes of a researcher, to focus the attention on the plebeian masses, and to continually underline the role and meaning of the craftsmen, the workers and other representatives of the working people during the French Revolution.

How do we acquire knowledge, and how reliable is it? Is there a real world beyond our senses, or is each of us an isolated atom? Can we really understand the workings of society and change it for the better? In his talk at a day school on philosophy, hosted by our British comrades at Socialist Appeal, Alan Woods (editor of In Defence of Marxism) mounted a defence of materialism against the trends of subjective idealism, such as positivism and postmodernism, that deny the possibility of objective and scientific knowledge about the world and society.

Marxists are often accused of ‘Eurocentrism’ and ‘class reductionism’ (particularly in academic circles) when we argue for the struggle of workers of all races and nations against capitalism. It is said our emphasis on international working-class solidarity ignores the experience of people from the former colonial world, who must ‘decolonise’ their minds of Western-imposed ideas (Marxism included), and fight their own battles for liberation. But what is the best way forward for oppressed peoples throughout the world? Hamid Alizadeh, a leading activist of the International Marxist Tendency, tackled these questions at our ...

Saturday 31 March, 1990, one day before the introduction of the poll tax in England and Wales, and one year after its introduction in Scotland, 250,000 people took to the streets to demonstrate in London and Glasgow organised by the All Britain Anti Poll Tax Federation (in which the Militant Tendency was playing a leading role).This was just the culminating act of a mass campaign organising millions of people's non-payment and active resistance against the implementation of the tax. This massive movement of civil disobedience eventually succeeded in bringing down the hated Thatcher government, despite being lamentably opposed by the TUC and Labour Party leaders. We reproduce here the

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The following is an introduction to Wellred Books’ new republication of The Civil War in France by Karl Marx. This excellent overview explains the main events and political processes of this inspirational watershed in the history of working-class struggle. The Communards' heroic, triumphant, but ultimately tragic efforts to build the first workers' government are filled with lessons for revolutionaries today.

This translation of an article originally published by Révolution (the French section of the IMT), provides an overview of the Paris Commune: its heroic rise, its tragic fall, and its lessons for revolutionaries today. We will discuss these titanic events in more depth during Wellred Books' special launch event for Marx's The Civil War in France. You can read more about this event here, and register for free here.

To celebrate the 150th birthday of Rosa Luxemburg, we publish an extract from the introduction to The Revolutionary Heritage of Rosa Luxemburg, a new book analysing the life and ideas of this great revolutionary Marxist.

Marxism has always been at the forefront of the cause of women's emancipation. The 8th of March (International Women's Day) is a red letter day for us as it symbolises the struggle of working class women against capitalism, oppression and discrimination throughout the world. In this article, we outline the first steps given by Marxism to fight for women's rights, what the first successful revolution meant for the emancipation of women, conditions of women under capitalism both in advanced and Third World countries and pose the question of how to eliminate inequality between men and women for good. Originally published 8 March 2000.

How do we acquire knowledge? Is there a real world beyond our senses? And if so, what is our relation to it? In this important theoretical contribution, marxist.com editor Alan Woods mounts a defence of materialism against idealism and the obscurantist, postmodernist subjectivism popular on university campuses today.

With the next federal election to the Bundestag on 26 September 2021 only seven months away, the German Greens are preparing for a possible return to the federal government and a coalition with the CDU/CSU, Chancellor Angela Merkel's party alliance. Founded 41 years ago out of the environmental, women and anti-war movements, the party has long since become a modern bourgeois liberal party of the 21st century, eclipsing the traditional bourgeois liberals of the FDP.

Revolution and Counter-Revolution in Spain

Felix Morrow's book, written in the white heat of the struggle, remains a Marxist classic on the Spanish Civil war. It is one of the clearest accounts produced of the movement of the Spanish masses, describing the events in Catalonia and the role of all those involved. This book provides an excellent companion to Ted Grant's 1973 article and the writings of Leon Trotsky on this question and deserves to be studied by all class-conscious activists.